Show Some Love

Posted on Mar 5th 2013 at 06:57:41 AM by (Crabmaster2000)
Posted under NES Challenge, Spy vs Spy, Taboo The Sixth Sense, Gemfire, Monopoly, Legend of the Ghost Lion, Jackal, Rad Racer, Rad Racer II

This blog entry sees me at a very significant milestone with my NES playing. It marks my 300th victory!! Since my NES collection is just a few games shy of 600 that also means I am finally at a point where I've beaten more than half of my NES collection! Even if I don't make my goal of 100 games beaten over 100 days this time I can at least take some solace in the number 300. The range of games played for this update is also pretty diverse. Its got everything from Non-games to Strategy to Racing.

The first game I played this time was possibly my shortest video so far. Spy vs Spy has the same ending on every difficulty level so I figured "why bust my ass playing on hard if its just the same?" and opted for the default level which is the lowest setting. The game is meant for quick multiplayer matches so it was pretty painless. Hard to judge the game based on playing against the computer, but it does seem like it would be kind of lame even against your buddies Sad

I also played everyone's favorite non-game (no it wasn't Color A Dinosaur again, sorry), Taboo: The Sixth Sense. If you are not familiar with this cart it isn't a game at all, but a Tarot Card simulator. So you ask the game a question and it draws out the cards and reads from the Arcana provided in order to give you some insight into your question........ and then provides you with lucky lotto numbers at the end Smiley. I asked it the most profound question I could think of.......

Gemfire is a game I've been wanting to get to for quite some time now and with my new recording setback this seemed like a great time to finally tackle it. Gemfire is a KOEI strategy game set in a mythological world. Your goal is to conquer every province on an island in order to unite the land under one leader. Much of the game is spent in menus developing your territories and building your army. The battles take you to another screen and involve moving your units around in a turn based fashion in order to capture your opponents base or defeat their army. Your army always consists of 4 units (1 Cavalry unit, 2 Knight units, 1 Archer unit) divided evenly between the number of troops you have available and you have the option of recruiting a 5th separate unit by either hiring them, meeting certain conditions (such as having a high morality level) or obtaining one of the 6 Gems scattered across the island in the hands of rival leaders.

Unlike many of the other KOEI games I've tried Gemfire is pretty user friendly. If you are looking for a game to introduce you to strategy games on the NES this is probably the best one. All the menus are simplified and the battles are extremely easy to grasp right from the start. There is still quite a lot going on each month, but its much easier to manage than on some of the other KOEI games. The scope of the game isn't quite as intimidating either. While Romance of the Three Kingdoms took me a whopping 40+ hours to beat, Gemfire only stole a mere 6+ hours of my life. Unfortunately the price of Gemfire hasn't been immune to the recent sky-rocketing NES prices, but if you are interested in strategy games its a really fantastic game for people like myself who are largely inexperienced with the genre.

Digging through my library for any more game show style games I stumbed across Monopoly which I've been neglecting. It might seem boring to most, but I have a pretty big soft spot for Monopoly. My cousin and I used to play the board game like crazy when we were kids and always argued about the rules. As a result I became pretty familiar with the rule book. I have a hard time playing with most people in real life because basically no one play the game properly. Wether its free parking paydays, not auctioning property or double the cash for landing on Go I get seriously irked when playing with most people. Luckily for people like me there are video game versions that allow me to play against computer opponents who must obey the rules!! I had a lot of fun with this as I haven't had a good game of Monopoly in quite a while now (no one wants to play with me and my rules Sad ).

Legend of the Ghost Lion is a game that I didn't know much about gameplay wise. I knew it was some kind of RPG and that was about it. It started off pretty decent. Very little for story and the directions where often pretty vague, but those are both things I expect from NES era RPGs. You play as a relatively weak young girl, who fortunately can summon various creatures to help out in battle. As you find enchanted items throughout the game you can summon things like Giants, Dwarfs or Centaurs to do most of your fighting for you. Grinding is almost non-existent because of how the level up system it set-up. Instead of gaining experience from battles you only gain currency. To make your character stronger you have to find Fragments of Hope which are found in treasure chests scattered in dungeons around the map. Another nice thing about the game is that pretty much all the dungeons are relatively short and straightforward.

Unfortunately once you enter the 3rd area of the game the difficulty really spikes. Because you only level up from obtaining Fragments of Hope there is a maximum level you'll be at for each area (assuming you found all the Fragments up to that point). So if you are struggling as I was at some points you can't grind your way out of it. Luckily dying only causes you to return to the last save area and lose half your cash. Money is pretty easy to obtain again so that isn't a big deal and the map is small enough that getting back to where you were isn't to bad as well. Its just kind of frustrating. The game is pretty short compared to many other RPGs too, so its not to big of a time sink either. What started off ok got a bit tiresome after a while.

When I'm at home I can still play some of the faster paced games and I've heard Jackal is decent and short so I popped it in. Most of the game isn't too bad, but I found one thing very annoying from start to end. That was that your jeep could only shoot its bullets directly upwards. This meant that to fire in any other direction you needed to rely on your secondary missile/grenades. These are your big explosive weapons so they fire understandably slow. Its pretty bothersome when you've got several enemies coming at you in an action game like this the last thing you want is to suffer through sluggish weapons and that problem persisted through the entire game. I feel like Jackal could have been amazing with that one little problem fixed.

If you've browsed my list of finished game you may have noticed several "classic" or "essential" games missing from it. One of those has finally been rectified. After far too long I've finally played through Rad Racer! It was actually quite a bit of fun for something so simplistic. Really had a good time on almost all the tracks. Track 5 was a bit frustrating, but otherwise it was pretty solid straight through.

Game number 300 was none other than Rad Racer II. Unfortunately Rad Racer II suffers from what a lot of NES sequels also suffer from. It somehow is very similar to the first game, but almost inexplicably loses some of its initial charm. I felt that way when playing other games like Chip n Dale 2, Duck Tales 2, Power Blade 2, Bubble Bobble 2, StarTropics 2, etc. Its a decent game, but for reasons I have trouble verbalizing I liked the first one a lot more.

Since 300 is a special number for me here is the full list of games done instead of the usual smaller list with just this years challenge games. Enjoy!

Beaten Since Oct.8th 2011

(click on a title to see the video)

Super Mario Bros
Super Mario Bros 2
Super Mario Bros 3
Mega Man
Mega Man 2
Mega Man 3
Mega Man 4
Mega Man 5
Mega Man 6
Adventures in the Magic Kingdom
Duck Tales
Duck Tales 2
Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers
Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers 2
Felix the Cat
Bugs Bunny Birthday Blowout
Ren and Stimpy Show: Buckaroo$
Double Dragon
Super C
Contra Force
Power Blade
Power Blade 2
Dynowarz: The Destruction of Spondylus
Metal Storm
Journey to Silius
Air Fortress
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Blaster Master
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turltes 2
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3
Legendary Wings
Guerrilla War
World Games
Snoopy's Silly Sports Spectacular
Caveman Games
DK Classics
Ninja Gaiden
Where's Waldo?
Bonk's Adventure
Panic Restaurant
Bubble Bobble 2
Dr. Mario
Bubble Bobble
MC Kids
Circus Caper
Roller Games
Tiny Toon Adventures
Tiny Toon Adventures 2
The Jetsons
The Little Mermaid
Monster in my Pocket
Gremlins 2
Kirby's Adventure
Kickle Cubicle
Kung Fu
Yo! Noid
Puss 'N Boots: Pero's Great Adventure
Wall Street Kid
The Karate Kid
Super Dodgeball
Super Spike V'Ball
Jakcie Chan's Action Kung Fu
The Three Stooges
Ice Hockey
Tecmo Bowl
Track & Field
Mario Bros
North and South
Battle Chess
The Simpsons: Bart vs. The World
The Flintstones: Surprise at Dinosaur Peak
Snow Brothers
Little Samson
Sky Shark
Ninja Gaiden II
Mike Tyson's Punch Out
The Simpsons: Bart Meets Radioactive Man
Little Nemo: The Dream Master
River City Ransom
StarTropics 2: Zoda's Revenge
The Jungle Book
Castlevania III Dracula's Curse
Mario is Missing
Blades of Steel
Hogan's Alley
Wild Gunman
Burger Time
Silver Surfer
Ninja Gaiden III: The Ancient Ship of Doom
Double Dragon II: The Revenge
Double Dragon III: The Sacred Stones
Ghosts n Goblins
Pro Wrestling
Adventure Island
Spy Hunter
Adventure Island II
Battletoads/Double Dragon
Pinball Quest
Section Z
Marble Madness
Back to the Future
Terminator 2
Total Recall
Robocop 2
Robocop 3
Hudson Hawk
Home Alone
Home Alone 2
Batman Returns
Ghostbusters II
Die Hard
A Nightmare on Elm Street
The Krion Conquest
Adventures of Dino Riki
Ultima: Exodus
Legacy of the Wizard
Ultima: Quest of the Avatar
Darkwing Duck
Ultima: Warriors of Destiny
Legends of the Diamond
Pro Sports Hockey
Dusty Diamond's All-Star Softball
Yoshi's Cookie
Kick Master
Zombie Nation
Stadium Events
Super Jeopardy!
Dance Aerobics
Adventures of Bayou Billy
Pipe Dreams
Ski or Die
Werewolf: The Last Warrior
Simpsons: Bart vs The Space Mutants
City Connection
American Gladiators
Roundball 2-on-2 Challenge
Athletic World
Super Team Games
Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Bases Loaded
The Addams Family Pugsley's Scavenger Hunt
Kings of the Beach
The Blues Brothers
Volley Ball
Lode Runner
3D World Runner
Twin Eagle
Dragon's Lair
The Adventures of Rad Gravity
Break Time: The National Pool Tour
Bases Loaded II
Rainbow Islands
Conquest of the Crystal Palace
Peter Pan And The Pirates
Kid Kool and the Quest for the Seven Wonder Herbs
Advanced Dungeons & Dragons: Dragon Strike
Wrath of the Black Manta
Race America
Treasure Master
Krusty's Fun House
King's Knight
Mighty Bomb Jack
Bases Loaded 3
Flying Dragon: The Secret Scroll
Dirty Harry
Cobra Triangle
Spider Man Return of the Sinister Six
Tag Team Wrestling
Eliminator Boat Duel
Galaxy 5000
George Foreman's KO Boxing
Ferrari Grand Prix Challenge
Thunder & Lightning
Heavy Shreddin'
Flying Warriors
Rocket Ranger
Roger Clemens MVP Baseball
Bill & Ted's Excellent Video Game Adventure
Destination Earthstar
Street Cop
Short Order/Eggsplode
Star Voyageur
Days of Thunder
Laser Invasion
Silent Service
Back to the Future 2 & 3
High Speed
Sesame Street Countdown
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Tournament Fighters
Shooting Range
Space Shuttle Project
Double Dare
Win, Lose or Draw
Whomp Em
Dragon Fighter
Bugs Bunny's Crazy Castle
Family Feud
Tale Spin
Gun Smoke
Kiwi Kraze
10 Yard Fight
Tom & Jerry
Wrecking Crew
Time Lord
Orb 3D
Wheel of Fortune Jr
Wheel of Fortune Family Edition
Captain America and the Avengers
Wheel of Fortune
Wheel of Fortune Featuring Vanna White
The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle
Bo Jackson Baseball
Jeopardy! Jr
Jeopardy! 25th Anniversary
Cowboy Kid
Crash n The Boys: Street Challenge
Color A Dinosaur
Sesame Street 123
Sesame Street ABC
Sesame Street Hide & Speak
Classic Concentration
Fisher Price I Can Remember
Fisher Price Perfect Fit
Mickey's Safari in Letterland
Mickey's Adventure in Numberland
NES Open Golf
DK Jr Math
Donkey Kong 3
Urban Champion
Balloon Fight
Hollywood Squares
Twin Cobra
Flintstones Rescue of Dino & Hoppy
Winter Games
NES World Cup Soccer
Defender II
MTV's Remote Control
Spot The Video Game
Spy vs Spy
Taboo The Sixth Sense
Legend of the Ghost Lion
Rad Racer
Rad Racer II



Future Plans - Gonna give a few point and click games some time this next week. Deja Vu and Univited and the like. Maybe King's Quest V if time permits.

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Congratulations on beating half the games in your NES library! I'd say you carry the retro torch high in hand. Best of luck for the next 300.
Oh what the hell, I'll just come right out and say it:

[B]THIS.. IS... NES-FEST!!![/B]

Any excuse to beat that 300 meme further to death...
It's been a great run, and I'm happy to have watched you do it.  You've provided many hours of entertainment for me (one way or another), so naturally I can't wait for you to continue, especially considering the next three teases (I didn't even know KQV was on the NES).

Congrats man!  That is a huge accomplishment and at the rate you are going, we will be celebrating 500 soon. You're right about 1st games being great and sequels typically being stinkers.  A few that come to mind that I think were great and maybe even better than the original were Mega Man 2 and ............. Castlevania 2 (let the capitalized letters and expletives flow), I love it though I know the fan club isn't large. Smiley
@singlebanana: Castlevania 2 was much better than the original.  On that I certainly agree with you, sb.  No one will disagree about Mega Man 2.
@singlebanana: Castlevania 2 is actually my big exception to the sequel rule. I like it a lot more than the other 2 on the system even though its got its own problems.

@bombatomba: Its been that much more enjoyable hearing feedback from you guys in between my playing. Thanks for the interest!!!
Congratulations Crabby!  I sincerely doubt I'll ever beat 300 games, let alone 300 for one console.
You sir, are a monster. Congrats on the landmark achievement.

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